Beatles, Mariah Carey, Michael Jackson

KEYSTONE Canada/Nancy Kaszerman/ZUMA Press/Pool Photorapher/

The Hot 100 just turned the big 5-0.

The seminal singles chart turned a half-century-old today, having made its Billboard magazine debut on Aug. 4, 1958. Ricky Nelson's "Poor Little Fool" topped the inaugural Hot 100 chart, which covered the week ended Aug. 9, and nearly a 1,000 songs have graced its perch since.

In celebration of its silver anniversary, here's our own hit list of Hot 100 highlights:

  • Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men's 1995 single "One Sweet Day" holds the record for the most weeks at No. 1 with 16.
  • 1987's Bad landed five No. 1 singles to give Michael Jackson the most chart-toppers ever from a single album.
  • In '95, Jackson's "You Are Not Alone" became the first song ever to debut at No. 1. Unfortunately, it's also his last song to reach No. 1.
  • In '64, the Beatles became the first band to replace itself at No. 1 when "She Loves You" topped "I Want to Hold Your Hand," their very first U.S. chart-topper. "Can't Buy Me Love" then hit No. 1 to make the Beatles the only group to string together three consecutive chart-toppers.
  • The Fab Four also became the only group to occupy the top five spots at once. Starting at No. 1, the five songs were "Can't Buy Me Love," "Twist and Shout," "She Loves You," "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and "Please Please Me." A week later, the Beatles set another record with 14 songs on the Hot 100.
  • Taylor Hicks' "Do I Make You Proud" claims the dubious distinction of being the only No. 1 song to spend less than 10 total weeks on the Hot 100. The 2006 song debuted at No. 1, a feat accomplished by fellow American Idol stars Carrie Underwood, Fantasia and Clay Aiken and by no one else in nearly a decade.
  • Billy Preston's "Nothing From Nothing" and Dionne Warwick's "Then Came You" share the record for the biggest falls from No. 1 with 14-spot drops. Remarkably, these drops happened in consecutive weeks in late '74.
  • "Go Away Little Girl" is the first song to repeat at No. 1 by a different artist—Steve Lawrence did it in '63 and Donny Osmond in '71.
  • At 33 years and 7 months, Cher holds the record for the longest span between No. 1s with 1965's "I Got You Babe" and 1999's "Believe." She had seven other No. 1s in-between.
  • Otis Redding claims the first posthumous No. 1 with 1968's "(Sittin' on) the Dock of the Bay." Redding had passed away in December 1967. Thirty years later, Notorious B.I.G. became the first artist to score consecutive posthumous No. 1s with "Hypnotize" and "Mo Money Mo Problems."
  • Domenico Modugno's "Nel Blu Dipinto Di Blu (Volare)" was the first non-English-language No. 1 back in '58. Los del Rio's "Macarena" was the most recent in '96.
  • Maroon 5's "Make Me Wonder" went from No. 64 to No. 1 in '07 to set the record for the biggest jump ever to the top of the chart.
  • In the summer of 2000, Aaliyah's "Try Again" became the first song to top the Hot 100 purely on radio play.
  • At nearly nine minutes long, Guns N' Roses' "November Rain" is the longest song ever to crack the Top 40.

In the 15 years before the birth of the Hot 100, songs were tracked on three different charts divided by store sales, radio spins and jukebox play.

By early 1958, the jukebox chart had been discontinued, and the new countdown, titled the Top 100, was the first to combine sales and spins. By August of that year, the Top 100 was rechristened the Hot 100, and it has remained the industry standard ever since.

For you history buffs, the Hot 100 debuted at a time when Eisenhower was president, there were only 48 U.S. states and gas set you back 25 cents a gallon.

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